Nostepinne Madness

Just the beginning

Just the beginning



My "nest" with a center pull

My “nest” with a center pull

What was I thinking? Winding 100 grams of my hand-dyed, amethyst-colored, sock yarn on a nøstepinde is not a quick undertaking.  I guess I was trying to “feel-as-one” with my Norwegian ancestors. Been thinking a lot about my grandma, Grandma’s favorite gem was the amethyst and flower the violet. As mentioned in yesterday’s post, this month’s sock is based on the amethyst and violet. Grandma was a first generation American, her parents came from Norway. With her foremost in my thoughts while working on this project, it’s not surprising that I eschewed my swift and winder.

The nostepinne, also spelled nystepinne or nøstepinde, is a traditional Scandinavian tool for spinners, weavers, and knitters to wind a center-pull ball of yarn. Nostepinne translates to “nest stick”. It looks like a big dowel, a really fancy one.  Grandma’s sisters told me that it was the traditional engagement gift in Norway. A young man would carve one for his bride-to-be.  Some of them were very elaborately carved, lucky women who received them. How wonderful it would have been to have inherited one from my Norwegian family.  The nice thing about the nostepinne is that it’s easy to travel with, sturdy, not easily broken, does not need a clamp or batteries, or even a swift, and it doesn’t change the yarn twist. Picture this: I’m sitting on the couch with legs up and my feet are acting as a swift. Wind, wind, wind, rest, wind, wind, wind, rest, etc. It took hours since I was trying to be ergonomic, but, finally, success was mine.  I now have a wonderful, center pull “nest”. I’m ready to start on this month’s socks.


Antique Nostepinne


Carved antique nostepinne

QThanks for stopping by. Now go have a crafty day.


Nothin’ Like A Cat Butt

Cat Butt coaster

Cat Butt coaster

After spending a few days with daughter Darcey and son-in-law Todd and their cats, sisters Roxie and Pepper, I had a total giggle fit when I saw some Cat Butt Coasters by Krystin Long.  Definitely a must have for my daughter and s-i-l. There were some free patterns on Ravelry, but I really liked the curved tail on this pattern AND I do like to support Indies. After buying the pattern, I searched for the perfect acrylic yarn which would match the cats’ coats and then quickly crocheted four coasters. You can see how well the yarn matches Pepper in the below picture.

Coaster and mug

Coaster and mug

Roxie and coaster

Pepper and her “twin” coaster

The Field Of Blood Hat

View 1

View 1

View 2

View 2

Center of Hat

Center of Hat

“The Field of Blood is a British crime drama television series adapting Denise Mina‘s The Field of Blood which is set in 1982 and The Dead Hour which is set later in the same decade. The first series of two episodes was broadcast on BBC One on 8 & 9 May 2011 and a second series of two episodes was commissioned by the BBC in 2012 [1] which aired on the 8 & 9 August 2013.” – Wikipedia

The main protagonist, Paddy Mehan (played by Jayd Johnson) in The Field of Blood was wearing this fabulous hat during one of the episodes. Pausing the program and taking pictures is the pits! Sorry, I did the best I could. The center of the hat was totally out of focus, but you can still see the “wheel”. My question is – this is crochet right? And to all crocheters – Have any of you seen a pattern like this? It kinda looks as if its a star. Was it constructed from the center and worked outward? It looks as if there is a crochet brim. Is this worked afterwards? I REALLY like this hat and would like to be able to make a similar one.

QThanks for stopping by. Enjoy your craftiness.

Did You Know?

As we move into a three day weekend, it’s the perfect time to get a library card and enjoy all of the FREE eresources available to you. For years now, I’ve downloaded ebooks and audiobooks for free from the library. Now, to my great excitement, libraries are offering more and more FREE emagazine checkouts through Zinio. A quick screen shot shows some of the magazines I have been able to “subscribe” to through my local library.  The nice thing is that the checkout NEVER expires so you can keep the ezines on Zinio for as long as you like. Read an issue you don’t care to keep? Just edit, click on the “X” and delete it! In addition, there are usually multiple issues to download. I downloaded four American Patchwork Quilting issues, etc. You don’t need a tablet or iPad to use Zinio, you can read it  online on a regular computer.

Did you know that there are “State” librarian help desks online that can answer questions about libraries in your state? I “spoke” to one and found that as a California resident that I can get a free library card at most libraries in the state, I don’t have to be a resident of the county the library is in. In some states, I can pay $10/year and get a card. Good news to me since different libraries offer slightly different eresources. I am addicted to audiobooks and love to listen to them while knitting, sewing, crafting, etc. As one of those kids who loved being read to, the love continues. I’d say my very favorite audiobook narrator is Davina Porter. I’ve checked out books I don’t normally “read” just because I love her voice. Conversely, there have been some books that I haven’t been able to get past the first chapter because listening to the narrator is as if I’m hearing fingernails on a chalkboard.

After finishing one audiobook last night, I decided that I’d really like to listen to the Louise Penny books. I have five different library cards, by “visiting” each library I was able to download her first three books and put the others on “hold”. Hopefully this is new info to someone and you get a library card and join in the “e-venture”.

QHave a happy, Zinio weekend.


Teaching the Young

curls -Teaching my young granddaughters new things.

My granddaughter Taylor stayed over 2 nights at Christmas time. She brought one of dolls. It was a great time for her to learn how to sew.

tayWe chose a fleece scrap that I had. Next I showed her how to pin and cut out the pattern. Then we went to the sewing machine. She had just the two shoulder seams to make. What a smile Taylor has here with her doll, Emily. Emily and here new poncho. Later Taylor cut fringe all around the bottom. Fleece is great for learning.

 This last week, my husband and I stayed at our son’s house and watch three of our grandchildren. I had big ideas to teach Baylei how to sew and crochet. Since I was sick most of the week, I didn’t get the sewing done.

bayBaylei started out crocheting in a circle. It turned out to be a small hat for her barbie doll. Next I had her do a row and turn.  She did this for a whole evening. The next day I started a pink hat for her. I made the top and she did in the round for the sides. First she wanted the hat to be the pink Angry Bird, but decided just a plan pink hat with braids. The hat is a WIP for my granddaughter. It feels good knowing your granddaughters want to learn. 🙂

Do You Measure Up?

–  While going through my knitting magazines, I came across this article about measurements,  “DESIGN Guidelines for your Sweater Patterns,” by Susan Lazear. It was published in IN Knitters Magazine, Spring 2005. I thought not only is a knitted swatch important, but so are your measurement. So Q and I “measured up.” We helped each other with the hardest areas on ourself to reach.

When you look at a pattern Susan Lazear tells us there are several “Key Points on a Garment” you will find. Here are her key points:

1. Upper Shoulder Point – This point is where the garment hangs each side of the neck.

2. Shoulder Width Point – Make sure when measuring the shoulder  you are not “falling over the cliff.”  Your sleeves need to have a place to hang from. Be sure to measure your front and back shoulder widths. The front width is usually one inch smaller. Most yarns are giving, so you can use the same measurement for both front and back when making or adjusting a pattern.

3. Garment Width – This is the largest measurement for your hips, waist or bust. Take the largest measurement and divided it in half. This becomes the width measurement for the garment. If you want the front left or right measurement, you divided it in half again. Note: If you are making a waist length garment, you would you your measurements for you bust or waist.

4. Armhole Depth – Measure from the top of the shoulder to under your arm. I measured from the back and added one inch to the measurement to give me some room.

5. Garment Length – Measure down from you neck point and let the tape hang. Also, measure from the front and let the tape hang to see which length you want the garment to hang to. Be sure not to have your garment end at place you do not want peoples eyes to drawn to.

Q and I put our measurements on the first page of the composition books we designed for our knitting thoughts and ideas. To make your own composition book see our blog on “Altered Composition Book.” 🙂

~This is why my measuring tape didn’t make it back to my knitting accessories’ holder.

Attack By The Yellow Angry Bird Hat

~For those of you who checked out the Angry Bird Hat patterns after our June 4 “Angry Bird Attack At My House” post you may have notice that there was not a pattern for the Yellow Angry Bird. How can that be? I decided to rectify the problem. Knowing that the Yellow Angry Bird looks as if it is pyramid shaped, I had to make a pointy-top-of-the-head. Now, I’m really a knitter so it took me a jillion tries to get the point just right! Without further ado, here is the Yellow Angry Bird Hat.

Yellow Angry Bird Hat*


Hook size US I – larger for adult, smaller for toddler

Yarn – Caron Soft in Sunshine, Red, White and Black. Beak – Red Heart Soft in Orange (Caron Soft does not have a bright orange).

Stitch Marker

Large Needle

Hat (Yellow)
Worked in the round, top down. NOTE: to make the cone top, do not join the rounds with a slip stitch, you will be using the first stitch from the previous round to add the first sc for the next round.

Ch 4 and form a ring with 1 sl st in 1st ch.

RND 1: Chain 1, 6 sc in chain ring.
RND 2: 2 sc in every sc = 12 sc.
RND 3: * 1 sc in next sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 18 sc.
RND 4: * 1 sc in the next 2 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 24 sc.
RND 5: * 1 sc in the next 3 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 30 sc.
RND 6: * 1 sc in the next 4 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 36 sc.
RND 7: * 1 sc in the next 5 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 42 sc.
RND 8: * 1 sc in the next 6 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 48 sc.
RND 9: Work 1 sc in every sc = 48 sc.
RND 10: * 1 sc in the next 7 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 54 sc.
RND 11: Work 1 sc in every sc
RND 12: * 1 sc in the next 8 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 60 sc.
RND 13: Work 1 sc in every sc
RND 14: * 1 sc in the next 9 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 66 sc.
RND 15: Work 1 sc in every sc
RND 16: * 1 sc in the next 10 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 72 sc.
RND 17: Work 1 sc in every sc
RND 18: * 1 sc in the next 11 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 66 sc.
RND 19: Work 1 sc in every sc
RND 20: * 1 sc in the next 12 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd = 72 sc.
RND 21: Work 1 sc in every sc
RND 22: *8 sc in the next 8 sc, 2 sc in next sc *, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd, Sl to 1st sc made, Ch 1, turn.
RND 23: *29 sc in the next 29 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from *-* the entire Rnd, Sl to 1st sc made, Ch 1, turn.
RND 24: 15 sc in the next 15 sc, 2 sc in next sc, 29 sc in next 29 sc, 2 sc in next sc, 15 sc in the next 15 sc, 2 sc in the next sc, Sl to 1st sc made, Ch 1, turn.
RND 25: * 15 sc in the next 15 sc, 2 SC in next sc, rep from *-* the entire Rnd, Sl to 1st sc made, Ch 1, turn.
RND 26: *33 sc in the next 33 sc, 2 sc in next sc, Rep from *-* the entire Rnd, Sl to 1st sc made, Ch 1, turn.
RND 26-46: sc around, Sl to 1st Sc made, Ch 1, tie off

Ear Flap

Count left from where you tied of on rnd 46.

Skip 10 sps, connect yarn and do the following:

Row 1-4: 11 SC, Ch 1, turn.

Row 5: SC2tog, 7 SC, SC2tog, Ch 1, turn.

Row 6: 9 SC, Ch 1, turn.

Row 7: SC2tog, 5 SC, SC2tog, Ch 1 turn.

Row 8: 7 SC, tie off and hide string.

NOTE: I did not tie off. I slip stitched the 10 stitches and then followed the pattern for rows 1-8. For the other ear flap, I counted 21 stitches from the back and placed a marker. When done with the first ear flap, I slipped stitched down the front and across the hat to the marker. I then continued to follow Rows 1-8. When finished with row 8, I slipped stitched to the back of the hat and tied off.

Edging – White

Using White yarn, start and back and sl st around entire hat including the edges of the ear flap.

Braids – White

Cut white yarn into 24 36” strips, 12 for each side. Take 12 and fold in half and place onto the ends of one of the ear flaps. Take these strings and braid into wanted length. Repeat using the other 12 on the other ear flap.

Beak- (Orange, make 1)

Base: Ch 26, sl to 1st ch made to form a ring

Rnd 1-2: 26 SC, sl to 1st sc made, Ch 1, turn.

Rnd3: * 3 SC, Sc2tog, rep from * around, SL to 1st SC made, Ch 1 turn.

Rnd 4: Sc around, SL to 1st SC made, Ch 1 turn.

Rnd 5: *SC2tog, 3 SC, Rep from * around end with 1 sc, Sl to 1st SC made, Ch 1 turn.

Rnd 5: SC around, SL to 1st SC made, Ch 1, turn.

Rnd 7: * 2 SC, Sc2tog, Rep from * around, SL to 1st SC made, Ch 1, turn.

Rnd 8: Sc around, Sl to 1st Sc made, Ch 1 turn.

Rnd9: *SC2tog, 2 SC, Rep from * around end with SC2tog, Sl to 1st SC made, Ch 1, turn.

Rnd 10: Sc around, Sl to 1st Sc made, tie off hide string.

Take Tail and weave the tail through rnd 10 pull tight to close hole, tie off and hide string.

Top Feathers (Black, make 1)

  1. Ch 10, sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc to end
  2. Ch 1, turn, sc in next 3 sts, ch 8
  3. Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc across
  4. Ch 1, turn, sc across
  5. Ch 1, turn, ss across to last 3 sts, sc in last 3 sts
  6. Ch 1, turn, sc across, ch 6
  7. Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc across
  8. Ch 1, turn, sc across, BO

Attach to top of head

Eyebrows (Red, make 2)

ch 12, sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc across

ch 1, turn, sc across

ch 1, turn, 6 sc, 5 sl st. Bind off.

Attach to body

Sew pieces onto hat as shown in picture.

*Parts of this pattern were based on the Black Angry Birds Hat by Designed by Crafts by Starlight. They did not have a Yellow Angry Bird Hat which is a pyramid shape, so I designed the pyramid top, the eyebrows, and the head feathers.

If you make the pattern please share! Remember, this site is copyrighted so if anyone wants to translate and post this pattern permission is required. 😎

The Younger Years

– My mom taught me to crochet at an early age.

This brown shawl was my first project. 🙂  It really is brown. Q took this to college with her. She loved it, it was cold in San Luis Obispo compared to San Diego. She gave it back a few years ago saying it would need to eventually be passed on to one of my boys.

This was my second crochet project.  I remember going with my mom to Yarn Mart to buy the blue yarn. Remember Yarn Mart! HUGE store with a zillion types of yarn to choose from. The shade of blue is just so wonderful!

Next, my mom taught me to knit. I would knit and knit just for practice. This is my first knitting project.

When I was in high school, this afghan kit was given to me one Christmas by mom. After a while, I got tired of knitting and knitting and knitting this afghan, so I bound off, even thought I had lots yarn left over. This could be one of the reasons I get bored with off-white yarn. A little while later, I used the leftover yarn to make a sweater with a hood and pockets which zipped up the front. Every time she sees the afghan, my mom says, ” I can’t believe I bought you such a complicated pattern for your first project.” I didn’t think about it being difficult. The only mistake I can see today is in the popcorn pattern. 😦 Don’t zoom in to close, I don’t want you to see the holes. 😎 I have tied up most of them. Lesson learned: store my woolens with cedar chips, with lavender, or in my deep freezer otherwise they become a fiesta for moths. 🙂

Angry at the Angry Birds Red Hat Pattern!

 After starting the Angry Bird Red Hat three times I’m going to use the Black Hat pattern for the Red Hat! I have been crocheting since high school (back in the dark ages), so I know how to read a pattern. After joining the circle it says: 2 SC, 2 SC next stitch.  I did 2 SC and then 2 SC in next stitch. Um, there aren’t any chains, it’s a solid crochet hat. What the instructions should have said was “SC in the next two sc, 2 SC in the following sc” or words to that effect. I actually checked quite a few similar crochet hat patterns to see if I was off-base, they had SC in the next two stitches and the 2 SC in the following stitch. Ok. Redid that. Forgot to put a marker in the first SC, pull it back to that point. Now, I followed exactly what was written, waiting for the crown to “fold over” to the sides.  Instead, this is the “potato chip” I’m crocheting! When I looked at the patterns for the Black, Blue, and Green Hats they were different than the Red Hat.  You can read the pattern and see how it goes down from the crown. The patterns for the other three colors match, it’s the Red that is different.  I’m done!  Restarting the Red Hat using the Black Hat pattern!  I know that pattern works since Curls has completed the Black Hat and it is FABULOUS!!! 😎 Learn from my hair wrenching experience, make the Red Hat using the Black Hat pattern! ARGH! 😎 Potato chip!

Home Full of Love – Curls

– The best thing about having a creative family is the love you see in every creation they have made. Q and my homes are filled with this love that we feel every time we look at them.

In my guest bathroom, I have a few small wall hangings that grandma made and a plaster of paris art work that I made in high school.


My breakfast nook has a floral cross stitch that I did. This is my favorite one. It took about two years to stitch. The teapot is done by my mother. She gave me the tea pot to go with the picture. The doily is done by my great aunt Mable, grandma’s sister. The two Crabby Patties are made out of play dough by my two older grandchildren, Baylie and Gavin.

This cross stitch is hung over my kitchen sink. It is one of my first cross stitch projects. I sign all of my projects, usually, in the lower right hand corner.


In my living room are so many had crafted items, it was hard to choose which ones to spotlight. The pillow on the left was done by dad. He made one for Q too. He was very crafty. He could fix just about anything. He enjoyed working with his hands. He got into beading and made some wonderful necklaces. One of his tips was published in Beading. The hand stitched lace, on the end table, was done by great-aunt Mable. I have tried to crochet lace like this but the hand work was too small for me to do. The cross stitch flower, on the wall,  was done by my husband’s step-grandmother Katie (close up below). The wall hanging on the right was done by grandma. Grandma did not do the “conventional” type of needlework, her items were pieces of art. Oh, the settee belonged to my great-grandparents. It also has a place of honor in my home!



The TV room is where I work. My husband’s chair is on the left and is draped with the blanket that I made for him. It has old time RV and travel trailers on it. Q gave me the material for my yellow ducky blanket, it was the first one I made. I love yellow, rubber duckies. I have since  made one for all of the grand-children. See the basket next to my chair, my knitting projects are in the basket. The green felted bag, I made, has my Wreck This Journal plus pens and supplies in it.  The spinning wheel corner has another cross stitch I made for my husband and another hanging done by grandma. Grandma LOVE to make this type of wall hanging.  All of us grandchildren have some. The spinning wheel was hand crafted in Norway. It was made for the new home in America. Great-grandma Slette brought it over.


This is the toy cross stitch I made for my husband. He loves toys. The four duck picture was drawn by youngest son, in high school. All the duck’s beaks are colored yellow except one, so I told him that was me. The only female in the family. The ceramics were made by oldest boy, in high school and the colored eggs  by my youngest. There use to be five. 😦

The master bedroom has my only quilt that I have ever finished, so far. It is the pattern “Turning Twenty”, by Tricia Cribbs. The crochet afghan was crochet by grandma. The wall hanging was quilted by sister Terri.


The end table is an old sewing table with the singer sewing machine still inside. On the table is another lace cover done by great-aunt Mable. She did such fab work. Closeup picture below.


The Peter Rabbit wall hanging was done by sister Terri.  It hangs in the grand-children’s room. The quest bedroom’s bathroom has a wall hanging done by grandma. Sitting on the toilet is a small creation done by her, also.

Hope you all have enjoyed looking at a small example of the wonderful creations that surround me everyday. Q and I have started early with our grand-children teaching them how to be creative.